My husband has a bum wheel. Meaning he has tendonitis in his left Achilles which is making it painful to walk. Major ouch. This would definitely be a hinderance to anyone, but it’s especially tough on someone who doesn’t have a car and relies on public trans, a bike, and his own two feet to get where he needs to go. The past few weeks have been a challenge, but the good news is that he’s slowly but surely on the mend.
As we slowed down to make things easier for him, I couldn’t help but notice just how fast everything else was moving around us. DC is rolling at a speed that’s tough to keep up with. It’s easy to rush through the hours in the exact same way we did the day before, without much pause or reflection. We’re busy people after all, a deviation from the plan can feel like an unnecessary burden!
But as the weeks went on, I noticed that I actually felt relieved for the opportunity to take a breather and avoid rushing. Am I grateful my poor husband was injured? Well, no, of course not. Am I grateful for some of the things I’ve learned while we changed our routine to make things easier on him? You bet. In fact, it’s been pretty eye opening. When we look at gratitude, really dig deep on what it means to be grateful, we’re reminded that it’s possible to be thankful for everything, even when things initially seem challenging. If we look hard, there’s usually a hidden opportunity to learn and grow. Or just slow down and give yourself some grace.
I think we found a silver lining in a challenging time. Even when my husband is back to feeling 100%, I’ll happily recall the reminders below to slow my pace as often as possible, even when it’s not out of necessity.
SWITCH IT UP
In order to avoid steep inclines and stairs, we altered our weekday and weekend walking routes. It’s amazing what you can find when you switch out of auto-pilot. Even just a turn here or an extra block there. At most we were only adding minutes to our journey, but the refreshing change of scenery was enough to provide a boost of interest that lasted the whole day through.
IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS
Because I wasn’t rushing from A to B, I’ve been picking my head up and looking around more frequently. Just observing my environment, the beauty in our every day. I often take for granted what’s happening around me, probably because it was there yesterday and I assume it will be there tomorrow. But why not appreciate what’s there today?
PLAN FOR NOTHING
I’m guilty of packing in my weekends. A bike ride here, meeting with friends there, 8 loads of laundry in between. When we started saying no for the sole purpose of picking our feet up (I’ll admit, elevation wasn’t imperative for me but I did it anyway!) it gave us the time to relax, reboot and reconnect. With the extra time to rejuvenate, Monday didn’t seem so scary after all.
Next time you’re out, try adding a few minutes to your travel time. Take the scenic route and slow your stride. You might be amazed at what’s been there all along.
Megan Sanchez is the owner of UpSwing Health Coaching. She works one-on-one with busy professionals who want to revamp their lifestyle and prioritize self-care. Megan helps people develop habits that are built on super small, everyday commitments to nutrition, movement, and personal nourishment that feel good because your body tells you so, not because you’re following the latest trend. She loves both outdoor and urban adventures. She’s called DC home for 7 years.